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Enjoy Fundraising Success with Take-Out Meals

Updated on March 13, 2011

Looking for a way to raise money for your charitable organization? The key to enjoying fundraising success it to come up with something that people will want to purchase at an affordable price. People don't like feeling pressured to purchase overpriced items that they don't need or could purchase for less at a local store.

Instead of asking your supporters to buy something they don't really want, consider offering convenient, homemade carry out meals. Everyone eats, and most people are in search of convenient and affordable food ideas. By hosting a meal event fundraiser, you can deliver a product and service that your supporters will appreciate, while also raising money for your organization.

Choose a Theme for Your Take-Out Fundraiser

The first thing you'll want to do when planning a take-out meal fundraiser is to choose a particular type of meal. If you come up with several different themes, you can host a variety of these types of fundraisers throughout the year. Some of the post popular food fundraiser events include:

  • Barbecue Meals– Perfect for a summertime cookout event, whether you offer plates, sandwiches, or ribs.
  • Fish Fry – Great any time of the year.
  • Chili – A terrific choice for the cold winter months. Sell it by the bowl or by the gallon.
  • Sub Sandwiches – Perfect for football season, whether for college or NFL games.
  • Deep Fried Turkey – A great fundraiser during the holiday season, whether you're offering full turkey meals or whole turkeys for people to use during their family holiday dinner celebrations.
  • Pancake Breakfast – This is a great choice for churches and other organizations whose members tend to gather during the early morning hours.

Recruit a Take-Out Fundraiser Committee

To pull off a successful meal event fundraiser, you'll need a strong committee. You'll need people in charge of soliciting donations of food items and paper products, as well as people to market the event and to prepare and serve the food. It shouldn't be difficult to get volunteers to help with this type of event, as participating can be a lot of fun for everyone involved.

Select a Format

Decide how the meals will be offered to your supporters. Will you offer delivery to offices during the week? Will people need to stop by the organization's location to pick up their meals? If so, will meals be available for after work pick up during the week, or will your event do better if you hold it on the weekend? Will you provide dine-in areas for those who would rather eat on site than take their food with them?


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  • Rotney profile image

    Rotney 9 years ago from Northwest Oregon

    Hi, mgwhite,

    Many fine points in this article. It is for good causes. I liked the part about taking it home. Most of them that I have seen are eat there. I don't always like to eat in.

    One income method we used in scouting was the Free Car Wash. The boys would take pledges of an amount for each car washed. The pledges ran from 10 cents up to what people felt they could pay. Big signs at the wash site, said, "Free".

    One thing we didn't think to do was add "Donations Accepted". One truck driver brought his rig (without trailer) over while he went shopping. He donated $20 and the boys really loved climbing over that rig. Of course, we made sure the cars and truck were clean.

    Good article for worthy causes.